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Old 11-22-2017, 02:07 PM
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JKU(R) Uniden CSX760 Install

Somewhere on the process of writing this it morphed from a (theoretically simple) step-by-step to a somewhat lengthy article. I'll attach the pics when I get home later.

I picked the Uniden over its Cobra counterpart for two basic reasons; price (at the time) & the mic design. Plus, the Cobra mic is clearly designed for a right-handed person, my radio operator (the Mrs.) is a lefty. The more uniform shape of the CX760 mic will work better for both of us. Here are the links if you’d like to draw your own conclusions:

https://www.uniden.com/automotive/cb...mpact_CB_Radio

https://www.cobra.com/products/recreational/c-75-wx-st

Note: The Uniden CSX560 offers similar features (minus the WX), in the same tiny package, at a lower cost.

The “head unit” for the Uniden radio is about the size of 2 decks of cards (side by side) and probably weighs a little less. I decided to mount it in the center console. It fits nicely without a significant impact on the storage capacity (see pics).Rather than fussing with the bracketry I used some HD Velcro to attach it to the side of the “bucket”.

There is a snap on panel that covers the back of the center console. With this out of the way you have ready access to the back of the storage area (see pics). I drilled a ½” hole to feed the connectors & wiring through near the bottom left hand corner (just above the edge of the rubber mat in the bottom). This hole is well hidden (from both sides) so I didn’t worry about the size or appearance.

Uniden recommends wiring the power leads directly to the battery. I elected not to go to all the trouble of fishing the wires through the firewall. My JKUR has a cigarette lighter style power outlet (and a USB port) inside the console. This outlet is un-switched so it’s hot all the time. This is the circuit I used to power the radio. The up side is; you don’t have to have the key in the ignition to operate the radio (could be helpful in an emergency). The down side; if you accidentally leave it on, it will eventually drain the battery. Making this connection, however, involved a rather elaborate process. I started by removing the passenger seat. Then I removed all the dash panels necessary to get the console cover off and loosen the console base. I won’t go into detail as there are a plethora of You-Tube videos on the subject.

Once everything was out of the way I was able to raise the console about 6” (it wasn’t necessary to remove it entirely). This was enough to reach underneath, unhook a few connectors, and free the wire harness so I could pull it out and work with it. I spliced the radio hot lead to the hot wire for the console outlet about half way between the connector & the harness. The inline fuse, provided as part of the radio harness, was left in place (for added safety) as it can easily be serviced by removing the cover panel (see pics). There is an existing ground stud, under the carpet, next to the left front seat mount. I ran the radio ground to it. This created a relatively short link between the radio itself and the ground plane, i.e. the body/chassis of the Jeep. I won’t go into RF theory about why this is a good thing just suffice it to say it is. Both these connections proved satisfactory.

The CMX760 mic uses telephone-style connectors. Fortunately it comes with a 3’ extension cord for the mic. I ran this from the radio, under the console up to the dash. I anchored the end of the mic cord with a cushion clip (there is a mount stud for the lower dash that is perfectly positioned for this). The mic can then be plugged into the extension just behind the lower dash. The shiny object at the bottom edge of the center dash in the one picture is the clip. It is the only part of this super-clean install that is exposed.I attempted to cut the carpet in such a way that it would lay back and hide it but it didn’t really work.

The antenna(s) are mounted to my steel aftermarket bumper on right side behind the fender opening. I made it a point to ensure the bumper had good ground contact when I installed it. I also ground away the powder coat on both sides of the mount hole. This position was chosen to allow a maximum fore & aft flex arc for the antenna(s). The traditional Jeep antenna position on the tailgate in front of the spare tire has what I consider to be a fatal flaw. Even with a spring, the spare severely limits the ability of the antenna to flex back out of the way when it encounters an overhead obstacle. If you wheel in the wide open spaces of the western deserts this is probably irrelevant. In the KY backwoods (my backyard) it’s absolutely essential.

I use 2 antennas. A 4’ fiberglass for “every day”, and a 102” whip for off road adventures. Both are mounted to a heavy duty spring bolted to/through the bumper. The 4’ clears my 7’ garage door opening (barely). The 102” gives me the range I need on the trail.I went this route after breaking several fiberglass antennas while wheeling. The longer stainless-steel antenna takes a beating in the woods but is flexible enough to do so. I started with HD quick-disconnects on both antennas but had to remove the one on the 4’ to get it in the door.

To provide easier access for cable routing I removed the Jeep top altogether (mine is a soft top). I used an 18’ Firestik cable with the Fire-ring connector on one end and the mini connector (w/ adapter) on the other. The 18’ length, though not really needed to get from point A to point B in a Jeep, is recommended for performance reasons. It has to do with resistance. Again, I won’t go into the RF tech (if you want to on your own, rightchannelradio.com has an excellent, and oft quoted here, “library” of articles).

On with the install… I drilled a hole just large enough for the mini connector in the plastic panel on the bottom of the tub behind the right fender well. Then I removed the right taillight and routed the cable up through the fender cavity. I split an aftermarket grommet put it around the cable and used it to fill the oversized hole.

There is an opening in the tub above the taillight for the wire harness. Removing the plastic panel (w/ sub-woofer if equipped) on the inside provides access to the top side of it (instructions for this panel are also available on You-Tube). Note: This is much easier with the top out of the way. I pulled out the grommet, removed the existing tape, and slit the sleeve to allow enough give to pass the mini connector through (the grommet was re-taped and reinstalled after the cable routing was finished – sorry no pics). The remaining cable was routed up over the roll cage (under the padding). Just unzip the padding lay in the cable and zip it back up. Then it drops back down behind the passenger-side B-pillar covers, goes under the passenger seat (& carpet), to the back of the center console. This left just enough cable (about 18”) to feed through the console to the radio.

Once everything was reassembled it was time for the SWR check. Amazingly both antennas metered out with readings a needles-width on either side of 1.1. For those not familiar with SWR readings; 1.0 is perfect and anything under 1.5 is serviceable. Anything over 2.0 can damage the radio. Which is why you need to meter your install. I attribute my excellent readings to a couple of things; a solid ground plane (the value of this cannot be overstated), the “high-road” cable routing, and the placement of the radio well away from the dash.As a result the RF interference from the vehicle’s electrical system is relatively limited.

Field tests are pending…


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Old 11-22-2017, 06:51 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mud Munkey View Post
Uniden recommends wiring the power leads directly to the battery. I elected not to go to all the trouble of fishing the wires through the firewall. My JKUR has a cigarette lighter style power outlet (and a USB port) inside the console. This outlet is un-switched so it’s hot all the time. This is the circuit I used to power the radio. The up side is; you don’t have to have the key in the ignition to operate the radio (could be helpful in an emergency). The down side; if you accidentally leave it on, it will eventually drain the battery.
Basic 2-way radio installation fundamentals always say to power 2-way radios directly from the battery. Whether doing so is a little more trouble or not. Secondary DC circuits like the cigarette lighter receptacle are generally noisier and can cause your CB to receive or transmit a more electrically noisy signal.

And with the low current draw of a CB with its Squelch on it'd take about a month for a CB to drain an automotive battery if you forgot to shut it off. It's always better to power a CB or ham radio so the power stays on whether the ignition switch is on or off.

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Old 11-23-2017, 07:18 AM
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Actually I agree with you. The "cleanest" power you can get is the best option. Thank you for the clarification.

Guess I didn't explain myself very well. I made the choice knowing my setup could be better. I have plans for a dual battery upgrade in the near future. Once that is in place, all my accessories will be powered through battery busses.

Still working on the pics (these new editors are a pita).
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Old 11-25-2017, 07:20 AM
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Old 11-27-2017, 06:08 AM   #5
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To Funny that is how I wired my not so legal 10 meter. Of course it is blown now so I have to replace it but I am moving it out of the box. I may get the CMX660 instead.
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Old 03-02-2018, 01:29 PM   #6
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Mud Monkey, it's been about 3 months or so, do you still like your 760 radio? Any issues powering it through the cigarette adapter? I was thinking of upgrading from my 505 to this one, and I've currently got it powered the same way you do.

I'm specifically interested in the scan function. How long would you say it takes the radio to go through 1 scan cycle? This radio is so new I can't find very many reviews, and even fewer videos.

Side note, you call it a CSX760 in a couple places in your post, but as far as I know it's a CMX760. Might help those searching for info on this radio if you change it.
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Old 03-02-2018, 02:33 PM   #7
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Mud Monkey, it's been about 3 months or so, do you still like your 760 radio? Any issues powering it through the cigarette adapter? I was thinking of upgrading from my 505 to this one, and I've currently got it powered the same way you do.
It is always (!) recommended to power any 2-way radio like a ham or CB directly from the battery or PDC 12v power input lug. It's always a poor choice to power such radios from the cigarette lighter as that source of power will never be as clean and free of electrical noise like the battery or 12v input lug on the PDC provides.

For a JK, this is where the 12v power input lug is inside the Power Distribution Center. It's as clean of a source of power as the battery is because it is connected directly to the battery next to it.
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Old 03-02-2018, 10:45 PM   #8
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It is always (!) recommended to power any 2-way radio like a ham or CB directly from the battery or PDC 12v power input lug. It's always a poor choice to power such radios from the cigarette lighter as that source of power will never be as clean and free of electrical noise like the battery or 12v input lug on the PDC provides.

For a JK, this is where the 12v power input lug is inside the Power Distribution Center. It's as clean of a source of power as the battery is because it is connected directly to the battery next to it.
In general I agree, but it doesn't necessarily mean that powering from the cig lighter will be worse. I wanted it to turn off with the jeep. Wiring directly to the battery could be worse for some wire paths. I've never had an issue powering my current radio from the cig lighter. I get good SWR, and everyone can hear me clearly. If it somehow turns out to be a problem, an LC filter is simple enough to make.
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Old 03-03-2018, 08:46 AM   #9
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In general I agree, but it doesn't necessarily mean that powering from the cig lighter will be worse. I wanted it to turn off with the jeep.
Generally speaking, no, the power from the cigarette lighter will never be as pure of a noise-free signal as what was recommended. For 2-way radios that can be a problem, especially in weak signal conditions when that type of noise becomes a problem. And yes I know what an LC filter is but there's no need for that if you just connect to the recommended source of power... Basic 2-way radio installation 101.

Also, when you're (if you) offroad, there will be many times you would want the CB on with the key off. Mine is often on with the key off or even in my pocket. If you're worried about the CB draining the battery, it'd take weeks of not starting the Jeep for it to do that. With the Squelch on, CB's draw next to no power when not transmitting. About what the clock in your radio draws.
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Old 03-04-2018, 11:20 AM
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A few notes later...

- for clarification; I'm not using the cigarette lighter itself. I'm tapped into the power side of that circuit (with an independent ground). I plan/ned, to connect directly to a + battery buss when I do my dual-battery mod. Thx for the pic Jerry. I may go that route rather than waiting another year (or so).

- As for performance; I've only used it twice. Off road with the 102" antenna was quite satisfactory. Though I only had one other rig to talk to on that trip. On the interstate (with the 4' antenna) it was a bit sketchy (but I expected that). We used the scan in a traffic jam and it works pretty well. It runs through all 40 channels in a few seconds. We could hear other transmissions reasonably well (understanding them is/was another story...)
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Old 03-04-2018, 11:27 AM
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BTW - I would be happy to edit(correct) the original post but I don't see that option...

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